Since landlords are responsible for almost everything in your rental from maintenance issues to assessing fees, a bad landlord can quickly turn your dream apartment into a nightmare.

But how can you tell if the landlord showing you the apartment is a good or a bad landlord?

There are certain signs that should tell you to either go for the apartment or run for the hills, because even if the place is nice, a bad landlord is just trouble waiting to happen.

Here are some signs that may indicate that this is a bad landlord.

Common areas are in a shabby condition

Common areas are in a shabby condition

Consider the condition of common areas to be an indication of the condition inside the apartment.

What about the landscaping outside, the lounge or the elevators, how do they look to you?

It is as simple as that, if the public areas of an apartment complex are not properly maintained, chances are high that individual units are not receiving any maintenance whatsoever.

Even if the apartment is in a good condition but the rest is not up to par, do you really want to live in such a building?

The apartments are not in a better condition

The apartments are not in a better condition

If you see a lot of minor damage in the apartment, then the landlord is not exerting enough effort in maintaining the units.

Do not overlook even the little problems, as they could be an indication that the landlord is not invested in making this apartment the best it can be.

The landlord is not easy to reach

The landlord is not easy to reach

If you find trouble contacting the landlord for an initial meeting or walk through, imagine how difficult it will be to contact him when you need something fixed in the apartment.

Before you sign the lease, the landlord should be on his best behavior.

if he cannot be bothered to be prompt now when he is still trying to earn you as a potential tenant, how is he going to react when you have a maintenance problem?

The first appointment can be very telling, If a landlord shows up late without an apology, or if your initial interactions seem unprofessional consider him a bad landlord.

The terms and conditions are not clear

The terms and conditions are not clear

In order to avoid unmet expectations and unexpected fees down the road, there are a few crucial things that should be laid out in the contract.

In addition to the obvious rent total and preferred method of payment, the contract should also state things like terms of lease termination and pet policies.

Plus, it is very important to document the rental condition upon move-in and who is responsible for maintenance and repairs down the line.

Always check the contract carefully before you sign. You should check for any clauses that seem out of the ordinary or any unusual charges added to your rent.

Ask a lot of questions

Ask a lot of questions

To avoid getting stuck in an apartment with a bad landlord, you should ask a lot of questions during the walk through.

This will help you accomplish two goals. First, you learn more about the place you are considering. Second, you get to know the landlord and their management style.

Questions should include things like: How long have you owned this property? How long have the last tenants lived here?

Or, who does the maintenance around here?

Whereas asking questions will not tell you everything, it will give you a pretty good idea about the apartment and the landlord.

The landlord dodges legit questions

The landlord dodges legit questions

Does the landlord avoid making specific statements when you ask questions?

For instance, when you inquire about repairs that need to be made, does he answer with “Do not worry about this” or does he give you a specific answer?

A good landlord should respond to problems with a plan and a timeline to get it resolved.

If he will not give you a straight answer, that is a clear sign that he is a bad landlord.

The security deposit is nonrefundable

The security deposit is nonrefundable

Security deposit should always be refundable, unless you do something to warrant him taking it.

Something like damage in the unit or leaving without giving him a notice as stated per the contract.

But if the landlord takes your security deposit for no good reason then he is a bad landlord.

For more about renting an apartment see also:

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